Helmets

photo 3

Look closer at this bike, it’s the same as mine!

With the Velo City Global conference having been held in Adelaide recently, the mandatory helmet law (MHL) debate has been reignited here, promoted no doubt by Mikael Colville-Anderson’s declaration that he would not ride here with a helmet when he was visiting for the conference. And the subsequent campaign for a helmet-exempt ride to be allowed in Adelaide protesting the MHL. I don’t think MHL is a good idea simply because it stops people from cycling. I wear a helmet most of the time, but in the heat of summer I don’t, it’s just too hot. I’ve never been fined for this or even told by a police officer to wear one. I see many other riders without helmets around here as well. What bothers me though, is these people, are they breaking the law or not?

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8 Responses to Helmets

  1. laurent says:

    I’ve been smiling when I started reading the post: my first thought was “Vicky is in a kidding mood, he he, the title and the beautiful rusted hair seem to be funny … ”, my second thought has been more reasonable: it’s a serious subject.
    Heat is an issue for focus, helmet doesn’t help to refresh head, on the contrary.
    Maybe it’s a security market, in that case the limit is a question. For instance: why the old men on the second picture didn’t wear a helmet neither?

    • Vicki says:

      I should have cropped the photos, the ones I was wondering about are the girl on the scooter and the man on the skateboard. I don’t know if the law requires them to wear helmets, yet here they are commuting by modes which are just as likely to need helmet protection as a cyclist.

  2. Nola Wilken says:

    Agreed! No mandatory helmet laws. Education is good, helmets are good, but not when it is too hot. Wearing a helmet in hot weather can actually give a cyclist heat stroke. When riding helmet-less, please be more careful. Oddly cyclists and car drivers “risk adjust” and drivers pass more closely to helmeted cyclists, while cyclists take more risks while wearing a helmet. Mandatory helmet laws are not the answer.

    • Vicki says:

      I didn’t know I could get heat stroke from the helmet, some days the thought of wearing the helmet is too much to bear so I just can’t face it.

  3. Peter Lee says:

    Vicki, interesting to hear the debate re helmets on the floor of the conference. Let me try and paraphrase; “When are we going to abandon the flat earth policy?” Not one of the worlds leading cycling campaigners supported the compulsory helmet law.
    I do not support the Mandatory helmet law, but I will always choose to wear a helmet personally. In all my years of cycling I consider I’ve really only had three accidents. One Mountain biking, one where a car knocked me off coming out of a side street. (He he he, there was more damage to his car than me or my bike, once my nerves calmed down.) The third was solo, my own fault taking a corner too fast, and I slid on my knees, gloves, and helmet. If I did not have that helmet on I would have slid on my face. If I was commuting a kilometer or two in work clothes, on well designed paths, I would not have been doing that speed around that corner either.

    • Vicki says:

      I’ve never had an incident where I needed a helmet. I’ve had one accident where a car hit me (it was running a red light) and, like your accident, there was more damage to the car than to me or the bike. I’ve never spontaneously fallen off a bike either, I really don’t feel the very remote risks justify wearing a helmet all the time in my case.

  4. John George Archer says:

    The Thin Blue Line has spotted me without my helmet on so many occasions that, ironically, THEY are risking apoplexy! Great Newy Blog, by the way.

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